The Mesmerist’s Victim - Alexandre Dumas - ebook

The Mesmerist’s Victim ebook

Alexandre Dumas

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Set in Paris during the French Revolution, „The Mesmerist’s Victim” tells the story of two star-crossed lovers whose romance blooms at an extremely inopportune moment in European history. Will they be able to find happiness together, or will they be swallowed up in the tumult of radical political and social change? „The Mesmerist’s Victim” is the second in Dumas’ fictional series on the French Revolution. The story continues the tale where „Memoirs of a Physician” left off. This is the second in Dumas’ series on the retelling of the French Revolution. Alexandre Dumas was a French writer whose works have been translated into nearly 100 languages. His historical novels include „The Count of Monte Cristo”, „The Three Musketeers”, „The Corsican Brothers”, and „The Man in the Iron Mask”.

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Liczba stron: 426

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Contents

CHAPTER I. THE DESPERATE RESCUE

CHAPTER II. THE FIELD OF THE DEAD

CHAPTER III. THE RESTORATION

CHAPTER IV. AN AERIAL JOURNEY

CHAPTER V. SUSPICIONS

CHAPTER VI. WHAT GILBERT EXPECTED

CHAPTER VII. THE TRAP TO CATCH PHILOSOPHERS

CHAPTER VIII. THE LITTLE TRIANON

CHAPTER IX. THE HUNT

CHAPTER X. A SEANCE OF MESMERISM

CHAPTER XI. THE DOWNFALL AND THE ELEVATION

CHAPTER XII. ANDREA IN FAVOR

CHAPTER XIII. NICOLE IS VALUED PROPERLY

CHAPTER XIV. ONE MAN’S MEAT IS ANOTHER’S POISON

CHAPTER XV. THE ROAD TO PREMIERSHIP IS NOT STREWN WITH ROSES

CHAPTER XVI. THE ENDLESS LAW SUIT

CHAPTER XVII. THE SECRET SOCIETY LODGE

CHAPTER XVIII. THE INNERMOST CIRCLE

CHAPTER XIX. BODY AND SOUL

CHAPTER XX. THE DIAMOND COLLAR

CHAPTER XXI. THE KING’S PRIVATE SUPPER-PARTY

CHAPTER XXII. PRESENTIMENTS

CHAPTER XXIII. FATHER AND DAUGHTER

CHAPTER XXIV. THE RICHELIEU ELIXIR

CHAPTER XXV. SECOND SIGHT

CHAPTER XXVI. SARTINES BELIEVES BALSAMO IS A MAGICIAN

CHAPTER XXVII. LOVE VERSUS SCIENCE

CHAPTER XXVIII. THE ULTIMATE TEST

CHAPTER XXIX. THE LIQUOR OF BEAUTY

CHAPTER XXX. THE BLOOD

CHAPTER XXXI. THE TRIAL

CHAPTER XXXII. MAN AND GOD

CHAPTER XXXIII. THE FAINTING FITS

CHAPTER XXXIV. THE AVENGER

CHAPTER XXXV. THE MISUNDERSTANDING

CHAPTER XXXVI. TWO SORROWS

CHAPTER XXXVII. THE GUILTY ONE

CHAPTER XXXVIII. FATHER AND SON

CHAPTER XXXIX. GILBERT’S PROJECT

CHAPTER XL. DECEMBER THE FIFTEENTH

CHAPTER XLI. THE KIDNAPPING

CHAPTER XLII. A STRANGE ENCOUNTER

CHAPTER XLIII. THE LAST ABSOLUTE KING

CHAPTER I. THE DESPERATE RESCUE

ON the thirteenth of May, 1770, Paris celebrated the wedding of the Dauphin or Prince Royal Louis Aguste, grandson of Louis XV. still reigning, with Marie-Antoinette, Archduchess of Austria.

The entire population flocked towards Louis XV. Place, where fireworks were to be let off. A pyrotechnical display was the finish to all grand public ceremonies, and the Parisians were fond of them although they might make fun.

The ground was happily chosen, as it would hold six thousand spectators. Around the equestrian statue of the King, stands were built circularly to give a view of the fireworks, to be set off at ten or twelve feet elevation.

The townsfolk began to assemble long before seven o’clock when the City Guard arrived to keep order. This duty rather belonged to the French Guards, but the Municipal government had refused the extra pay their Commander, Colonel, the Marshal Duke Biron, demanded, and these warriors in a huff were scattered in the mob, vexed and quarrelsome. They sneered loudly at the tumult, which they boasted they would have quelled with the pike-stock or the musket-butt if they had the ruling of the gathering.

The shrieks of the women, squeezed in the press, the wailing of the children, the swearing of the troopers, the grumbling of the fat citizens, the protests of the cake and candy merchants whose goods were stolen, all prepared a petty uproar preceding the deafening one which six hundred thousand souls were sure to create when collected. At eight at evening, they produced a vast picture, like one after Teniers, but with French faces.

About half past eight nearly all eyes were fastened on the scaffold where the famous Ruggieri and his assistants were putting the final touches to the matches and fuses of the old pieces. Many large compositions were on the frames. The grand bouquet, or shower of stars, girandoles and squibs, with which such shows always conclude, was to go off from a rampart, near the Seine River, on a raised bank.

As the men carried their lanterns to the places where the pieces would be fired, a lively sensation was raised in the throng, and some of the timid drew back, which made the whole waver in line.

Carriages with the better class still arrived but they could not reach the stand to deposit their passengers. The mob hemmed them in and some persons objected to having the horses lay their heads on their shoulder.

Behind the horses and vehicles the crowd continued to increase, so that the conveyances could not move one way or another. Then were seen with the audacity of the city-bred, the boys and the rougher men climb upon the wheels and finally swarm upon the footman’s board and the coachman’s box.

The illumination of the main streets threw a red glare on the sea of faces, and flashed from the bayonets of the city guardsmen, as conspicuous as a blade of wheat in a reaped field.

About nine o’clock one of these coaches came up, but three rows of carriages were before the stand, all wedged in and covered with the sightseers. Hanging onto the springs was a young man, who kicked away those who tried to share with him the use of this locomotive to cleave a path in the concourse. When it stopped, however, he dropped down but without letting go of the friendly spring with one hand. Thus he was able to hear the excited talk of the passengers.

Out of the window was thrust the head of a young and beautiful girl, wearing white and having lace on her sunny head.

“Come, come, Andrea,” said a testy voice of an elderly man within to her, “do not lean out so, or you will have some rough fellow snatch a kiss. Do you not see that our coach is stuck in this mass like a boat in a mudflat? we are in the water, and dirty water at that; do not let us be fouled.”

“We can’t see anything, father,” said the girl, drawing in her head: “if the horse turned half round we could have a look through the window, and would see as well as in the places reserved for us at the governor’s.”

“Turn a bit, coachman,” said the man.

“Can’t be did, my lord baron,” said the driver; “it would crush a dozen people.”

“Go on and crush them, then!”

“Oh, sir,” said Andrea.

“No, no, father,” said a young gentleman beside the old baron inside.

“Hello, what baron is this who wants to crush the poor?” cried several threatening voices.

“The Baron of Taverney Redcastle–I,” replied the old noble, leaning out and showing that he wore a red sash crosswise.

Such emblems of the royal and knightly orders were still respected, and though there was grumbling it was on a lessening tone.

“Wait, father,” said the young gentleman, “I will step out and see if there is some way of getting on.”

“Look out, Philip,” said the girl, “you will get hurt. Only hear the horses neighing as they lash out.”

Philip Taverney, Knight of Redcastle, was a charming cavalier and, though he did not resemble his sister, he was as handsome for a man as she for her sex.

“Bid those fellows get out of our way,” said the baron, “so we can pass.”

Philip was a man of the time and like many of the young nobility had learnt ideas which his father of the old school was incapable of appreciating.

“Oh, you do not know the present Paris, father,” he returned. “These high-handed acts of the masters were all very well formerly; but they will hardly go down now, and you would not like to waste your dignity, of course.”

“But since these rascals know who I am–“

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